A conservative forum Saturday in Aptos featuring Republican congressman Devin Nunes of Tulare drew a crowd of about 350 protesters – some of whom said they were there in response to Nunes not scheduling time with constituents during the congressional break.
Nunes, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, was a featured speaker at a conference called “The Path Forward: America in 2017 and Beyond” hosted by the Steamboat Institute.
According to The Santa Cruz Sentinel, his topics included concerns with al-Qaida plotting future attacks, Chinese economic and militaristic expansion, and the U.S. tax code.
Protesters marched along Seascape Resort Drive before the event that drew about 230.
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Army veteran Kathy Bidwell of Soquel was among the members of Santa Cruz Indivisible and other groups, such as Veterans For Peace. Bidwell said Nunes “ditched his constituents” during the recess.
Casey Carlson, chairwoman of Greater Santa Cruz Federation of Teachers, said the protest was a direct response to that.
“This protest originated because his constituents could not meet with him,” Carlson told the Sentinel.
Nunes and fellow Republican congressman Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield and David Valadao of Hanford last week came under criticism from Democrats for not holding town-hall meetings with constituents. On Tuesday, between 100 and 150 demonstrators gathered outside McCarthy’s Lincoln Day dinner where Nunes was the featured speaker. On Thursday night, candlelight vigils were held outside Nunes’ and Valadao’s district offices in the South Valley.
Read the full story from the Santa Cruz Sentinel here.